Octant Praia Verde

Castro Marim, Algarve, Portugal
Book from Book from £115 per night

Cool, contemporary boutique hotel close to a long sandy beach (and to Spain); great for families

Here on the eastern coast, you'll find a rare pocket of the Algarve that hasn’t been over-developed. Set amidst protected pine forests, you're only a short hop across to Spain, and a 15-minute stroll down to a magnificent sandy beach with a handful of low-key restaurants and bars.

Most of its 65 suites have bijou kitchenettes and sofabeds, so it’s especially handy for families or as a base for longer stays. Design is sleek and clean, with good use of slate and mosaic tiles. This boutique hotel cleverly blends a homely, honest feel into a contemporary open-plan style. But there's a touch of soul, too. We found the service absolutely charming. Their popular restaurant A Terra serves hearty dishes from the wood-burning oven. For those in search of local produce (including the famous Castro Marim 'flor de sal'), there's a small deli corner which is great for gifts. We left with the following words chalked up on their reception blackboard: "The world is a book, and those who do not travel read only one page!" Indeed. Praia Verde is a page not worth skipping.


  • We loved the relaxed, friendly, open-plan vibe and delicious food
  • An easy 15-minute walk to one of the Algarve's best beaches and a collection of seasonal restaurants, kiosks and bars
  • A great, unspoilt location, with lots to do (cycling, dolphin watching, castles); and Seville is only 1.5 hours drive away
  • Affordable family suites and free kids club during the summer months
  • Less than a 45-minute drive from Faro airport


  • The long corridors are a little spartan: we thought they could do with some artworks
  • Pine trees obscure much of the view from lower-floor rooms
  • You'll probably want a hire car - there are few shops or transport links nearby
  • Suite kitchenettes are pretty basic but useful for preparing snacks
  • Disappointing coffee and Lipton tea at breakfast! Stick to your in-room Nespresso

Best time to go

The hotel usually closes November - March, and we think April and September are great months: the beach is almost empty, and room rates are lower; be aware though that everything local is likely to be closed until late May, as well as the hotel's pool bar. The area can get crowded in August, though nothing like the central Algarve.

Our top tips

Try and book as high a room as possible. During the night you can watch the sea sparkle with lights from the boats fishing for squid.

Great for...

Great Outdoors
  • Boutique Hotel
  • 65 rooms
  • Restaurant (open daily)
  • All ages welcome
  • Open all year
  • Outdoor Pool
  • Spa Treatments
  • WiFi
  • Pet Friendly
  • Disabled Access
  • Beach Nearby
  • Off-street Parking
  • Restaurants Nearby
  • Air Conditioning
  • Guest Lounge
  • Terrace
  • Garden
  • Gym
  • Bicycles Available


Accommodation comes in 4 flavours. Suites on the 1st (ground) floor, look into the pine woods, while others on the 2nd floor have sweeping views over the treetops. All Suites share the same simple design, with striking faux-bookshelf wallpaper in the bedrooms; the beds are so comfy that I slept for 10 hours on my first night. You also have a balcony, separate living room with sofabed as well as a kitchenette with hob, microwave and Nespresso machine (but no chopping board, toaster or kettle, yet). Compact bathrooms are generally black slate with powerful rain showers; bathrobes can be requested. Either type can become a Family Suite when the sofabed is used; cots are free. All are the same size, but those on the lower floor have a bath and overhead shower, whereas 2nd-floor Suites have a shower only. The beds in Deluxe Mezzanine Rooms are separated from the seating area by a glass balcony.

On the top floor are the light-filled, adults-only Sea View rooms, where you can soak up ocean scenery from your balcony. They are considerably more stylish in decor, with designer lampshades, rustic desks, and pops of colour from beautiful patterned cushions. Sea View Double Rooms have a walk-in shower in their lovely all-white bathrooms; Sea View Superior Rooms and Deluxe Sea View Rooms have a standalone tub, too.

Features include:

  • Air conditioning
  • Central heating
  • Extra beds
  • Family friendly
  • Hairdryer
  • Phone
  • Terrace
  • Toiletries
  • TV
  • WiFi


The stylish restaurant, A Terra, offers tasty, rustic dishes such as braised baby chicken (with herbs from the garden), cod with chickpeas and coriander, or local fish stew served in a black Le Creusot casserole dish. Windows open out for alfresco dining and it has a welcoming feel, with big wooden tables, flexible eating times and a relaxed vibe. Don't miss the crispy pizzas from their wood-burning oven and tempting desserts including a carob crumble and homemade raspberry sorbet. We ate very well.

Breakfast is a buffet of delicious just-baked breads and pastries (don't miss the kiwi and pumpkin jams), cereals, fresh fruit, healthy juices and scrambled eggs. In summer you can get light lunches by the pool - sardine sandwiches, steak burgers - or of course head down to the beach for fresh fish or pasta. Back at the hotel, an impressive gin menu offers over a dozen varieties for a stiffening aperitif.

Features include:

  • Bar
  • Breakfast
  • Children's meals
  • Dishwasher
  • Family friendly
  • Fridge
  • Hob or stove
  • Kitchenette
  • Microwave
  • Restaurant
  • Restaurants nearby
  • Room service


  • Head down to the sandy beach (15 mins' walk) - shallow waters, great sand-castling, and a scattering of seasonal bars and restaurants. In the evening Guarita Terrace is the best spot for sunset cocktails, and for late-night clubbing hotel guests get priority access to Clube Praia Verde
  • The hotel can help arrange brilliant activities, including fishing trips, dolphin watching, picnics on the beach, bird watching in the marshlands, or golf tee times (there are 6 courses within 12km)
  • Lounge by the pool or relax at the pool bar; if it gets too hot there's plenty of shade
  • Visit Castro Marim (7km) for its castle and fort - the hotel can lend you bikes for a small charge; or drive to Tavira, one of the prettiest towns in the Algarve, (17 km / 15 mins' drive)
  • Pop across to Spain: the coast between Mazagón and Matalascañas has wild pine-shaded beaches and massive sand dunes; the town of El Rocio is like a Western filmset; and Seville is only an hour and a half away
  • Chill out downstairs: read the papers, borrow a book from their collection, or enjoy a black and white movie projected onto a wall in the lounge area

Activities on site or nearby include:

  • Birdwatching
  • Boat trips
  • Cycling
  • Dolphin watching
  • Golf
  • Horse riding
  • Sailing
  • Shopping / markets
  • Swimming


All ages are welcome and the flexible accommodation and catering options make it a popular choice with families, especially in the summer holidays. All suites have a sofabed for 1-2 children, in a separate living room along with a basic kitchenette (ideal for rustling up simple meals).

Praia Verde offers a selection of free kids' activities in the summer months, aimed at 5-11 year olds. During the holidays there might be face painting, dressing up, kids cooking classes (pizzas or local carob chocolate biscuits), movie nights with popcorn or even a visit from the local dog school. There's a small playroom full of toys for younger kids.

Best for:

Babies (0-1 years), Toddlers (1-4 years), Children (4-12 years)

Family friendly accommodation:

Suites have a double sofabed for up to 2 children and space for a baby cot, too. When booking, a Family Suite is the same as the regular Suites but with the sofabed made up at around 7pm; choose from 1 or 2 extra guests. The top-floor of the hotel (Double and Superior Sea View Rooms) is adults only.


Babysitters can be arranged through reception

Baby equipment:

  • Baby cots
  • High chairs

Remember  baby and child equipment may be limited or need pre-booking

Creche/Kid's Club:

Free kids' club for 5-11 year olds in the summer holidays with a weekly events calendar that includes treasure hunts, theatrical play, carnival face painting, Mediterranean cuisine workshops (pizza and carob biscuits)

Children's meals:

Children's menus are available and the atmosphere in the restaurant is relaxed and friendly. The pizzas were a winner with our daughter.

Kids Activities on site:

  • Small playroom near reception
  • Books and toys
  • Outdoor swimming pool
  • Playground with swing
  • Movie nights with popcorn

Kids Activities nearby:

  • Nearby sandy beach has shallow water (easy 15 min walk)
  • Bird or dolphin watching
  • Family bicycle rides
  • Introduction to golf

Families Should Know:

The pools (a main pool and baby splash pool) are unheated. It's a good 15-minute walk to the beach, there is a golf buggy available to bring you back if needed. You'll need to pay a deposit for pool towels, and bring your own beach towels.


  • Airport: 45 minutes' drive (Faro)
  • Hospital: 45 minutes' drive (Faro)
  • Shop: 800m (main season only)
Kid Friendly:


Praia Verde is in a residential villa development near Castro Marim, in the Eastern Algarve, southern Portugal. It's 50km (45 mins) east of Faro and 8km from the Spanish border.

By Air
Fly into Faro (58km) then hire a car. You can also fly into Seville in Spain but make sure you're allowed to take your hire car across the border. You can park for free at the hotel.

Detailed directions will be sent when you book through i-escape.


  • Faro 58.0 km FAR
  • Seville 165.0 km SVQ


  • Beach 0.2 km
  • Shops 1.0 km
  • Restaurant 1.0 km

Our guests' ratings...

Based on 1 independent review from i-escape guests


The staff were all without doubt so friendly and helpful and accommodating. The on site restaurant was consistently brilliant. The kids club was good -not to the same level as a Martinhal resort but still a pleasant place for your child to spend an hour or so. Very chilled.
One thing I would like to have seen from an eco perspective is water dispensers dotted around the hotel. It seems so crazy for us all to be using and buying bottles of water when we get through so many. Recently some hotels we have stayed in have provided these and I think it’s such a great move. The water bottles they provided in our rooms you could only get 2 or 3 glasses from so it seemed so wasteful,
All in all though we LOVED it here. So many friendly people and interestingly lots of return guests. We will definitely return.
Thanks so much Octant Praia Verde! And the beach buggy runs were a godsend!!!


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